A typical Filipino meal will not be complete without rice; it’s usually only in the Philippines where restaurants offer unlimited rice to attract customers. A majority of Pinoys consume white rice on a daily basis. But there are those who prefer brown rice. So the question remains: which is better?
For those aiming for a healthier body, organic food like brown rice should be part of your menu. White rice are more refined compared to brown rice, stripping away iron, zinc, magnesium, and other nutrients in the process.
Brown rice, meanwhile, is milled only once, so it still has parts of the hull as well as bran, both of which provide the grain’s “natural wholeness”.
You get more selenium and manganese when you eat brown rice, too. The former helps lower risk of degenerative diseases like cancer. Manganese, on the other hand, benefits the nervous and reproductive system, and is responsible for synthesizing fats.
Moreover, there are studies that prove that replacing white rice with brown reduces the risk of developing type 2 diabetes.
Researchers at the Harvard School of Public Health say that two or more servings of brown rice have been associated with a lower risk for the disease. On the other hand, five or more servings of white rice per week lead to an increased risk.
This is because brown rice has low glycemic index (GI). This index classifies food according to how quickly and by how much they raise blood sugar levels. So how do you determine which is better? Essentially, the higher the GI, the faster the food is digested and the higher blood sugar levels go.
Between white and brown rice, the former has a higher GI compared to the latter.
Replacing white rice with brown is also better for weight loss. When you eat brown rice, you feel full even if you eat only a small portion of the meal. Moreover, the fiber content in brown rice is higher compared to white, leading to better digestion and helping to prevent colon cancer.
Aside from the health benefits, it is environmental and farmer friendly. Since brown rice has to be milled just once, it reduces the use of fuel. This means less pollution and carbon emissions, and also reduces production costs.
This is good for farmers because they won’t have to buy machineries used for white rice.
It will also help the country in general. Brown rice may increase the Philippines’ food supply and decrease the need to import rice.
According to a study conducted by the Philippine Research Institute, milling brown rice reduces food waste. It’s 10% milling recovery compared to white rice is equivalent to saving 1.2 million metric tons of rice.
At present, we are still the world’s biggest importer of rice. Ironic isn’t it? With an increased food supply due to brown rice, it would lessen the need for importation from other countries.
Going ‘brown’ would benefit not just us Filipinos, but also the country and environment. For more information about healthy food, organic farming and the like, visit Davao Organics.